Managers need to understand the people in their organizations because they have to be able to understand what their superiors want and get their subordinates to fulfill those desires. Neither is possible without an understanding of the people involved.
Managers, in a sense, serve as intermediaries between the upper echelons of a firm and its workers. They are in charge of getting the workers to perform the tasks the upper levels lay out. To do this well, they have to understand both groups of people in their organization. First, they have to understand the people above them in the hierarchy. They have to understand how those people think and what they expect from the rank-and-file workers. Secondly, managers have to understand those who work for them. They have to understand how to motivate their employees and how to get them to feel happy in their jobs. They have to be able to put their employees in situations that allow them to do their jobs as well as possible, thus pleasing the managers’ own bosses.
Because managers have to take orders from above and transmit them to people below, it is important for them to understand both their superiors and their subordinates.